I had the chance to climb a tree today...a really tall one. When I was younger, I spent a lot of my time climbing a tree in our front yard. I played in it, sat and thought in it, felt sad at the loss of a friendship in it. And over the years, every chance I got, I would climb trees. Well, I haven't had that opportunity much the past few years, but today that changed.
The tree I climbed today required the use of a full body harness, helmet and belay. My purpose in climbing that tree was to fix a ropes course event, but that didn't change the fun I had doing it. I'm not good at judging distance, but I would say I was over 40 feet in the air. The tree was an evergreen, and sap was oozing out of it everywhere. By the time I had come down from the tree, my hands were covered in sticky sap. Remenants remain on my hands this evening (and a blister, too. How fun).
Although my purpose in climbing that tree today was "work" related, I just enjoyed so much the time spent way up there, smelling the sap and the wood. Smelling the trees surrounding me. There was still snow on the ground, and the air was cool.
I wonder why it is that climbing trees has always brought me so much joy. Perhaps it is just the simple connection it fosters between me and nature. To be supported by the tree. The challenge of moving up and along the many winding branches, feeling how they grow, wondering at their ability to support my weight. It's peaceful up there. It's connection. It's wonder and awe.